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Media and Memory$
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Joanne Garde-Hansen

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780748640348

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748640348.001.0001

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Voicing the Past: BBC Radio 4 and the Aberfan Disaster of 1963

Voicing the Past: BBC Radio 4 and the Aberfan Disaster of 1963

(p.91) 5 Voicing the Past: BBC Radio 4 and the Aberfan Disaster of 1963
Media and Memory

Joanne Garde-Hansen

Edinburgh University Press

Radio has a close relationship to oral history making and personal/collective recollections of the past can have profound effects personally, locally and nationally. BBC Radio 4 has a reputation for engaging with local communities, drawing upon oral histories and presenting the past in richly woven narratives that powerfully convey personal and collective memories. With a strong background in pioneering digital storytelling through their CaptureWales (2001-2007) project, the BBC has been instrumental in the performance of memory through media. This chapter will provide a fuller understanding of the BBC's role in making memories with local communities through an analysis of Radio 4's anniversary programme The Aberfan Disaster 1963. This is an important case study for understanding voice/sound as remembering devices, engaging listeners in emotionally charged reconstructions.

Keywords:   Media event, disaster reporting, collective memories, Aberfan, radio

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